Red Sox Pack Power at Top of Lineup as Boston Aims to Steal One in Baltimore


Red Sox Pack Power at Top of Lineup as Boston Aims to Steal One in BaltimoreThe Orioles are flying high.

They're tied with the Yankees for the division lead, almost certain to get a playoff berth and just can't seem to lose close games.

Enter the Red Sox.

A year after Boston crumbled to a 7-20 finish and saw their postseason chances batted away by the Birds on the final day, the Sox have had a chance to return the favor. They haven't done much in September, though, going 7-18 so far and failing to wreck other teams' postseason hopes.

If Boston wants to play spoiler, now is the time. The Red Sox face the surging Orioles one more time Sunday and have the Yankees waiting in the final three games of the season.

Manager Bobby Valentine is packing the top of his lineup with his best power as the Red Sox prepare for their final tilt against Baltimore. Jacoby Ellsbury is back for a second straight start, leading off, and Dustin Pedroia and Cody Ross will take the next two spots.

Mauro Gomez is hitting in the cleanup hole Sunday. He's been capable for Boston since being called up this year, batting .281.

Zach Stewart (1-3, 7.91 ERA) takes the ball in his second start for the Sox as Orioles stopgap Joe Saunders (8-13, 4.09) looks to keep up what has been pretty good results against Boston.

Here are the lineups for Sunday afternoon:

Red Sox (69-89)

Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Cody Ross, RF
Mauro Gomez, 1B
Danny Valencia, 3B
Ryan Lavarnway, C
Daniel Nava, LF
Pedro Ciriaco, DH
Jose Iglesias, SS

Zach Stewart, P

Orioles (91-67)

Nate McLouth, LF
J.J. Hardy, SS
Chris Davis, RF
Adam Jones, CF
Matt Wieters, C 
Jim Thome, DH
Mark Reynolds, 1B
Ryan Flaherty, 2B
Manny Machado, 3B

Joe Saunders, P

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